Women Empowerment Schemes in India
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Under Article 15(3), the Indian Constitution allows for positive discrimination in favor of women. The Directive Principles of State Policy 39(A) states that: “The State shall, in particular, direct its policy towards securing that the citizens, men, and women equally, have the right to an adequate means of livelihood”. Let us learn about the various Women Empowerment Schemes in India.
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Women Empowerment Schemes in India
1. Beti Padhao, Beti Bachao Scheme – This scheme was generated on 22nd January 2015 with the funding of 100 crores. The objectives are – to prevent sex-selective abortion, to ensure the survival and protection of a girl child, and to ensure education for a girl child. The government believes in “Beta Beti Ek Samaan”. The aim of this scheme is to eliminate discrimination on the basis of gender, to ensure that every girl child survives and the government ensures that every girl in the country receives the basic education.
2. One-Stop Centre Scheme – This scheme will be funded by the Nirbhaya scheme. The aim of the scheme is to provide support and assistance to women affected by violence both in private and public spaces. It also facilitates immediate emergency or non-emergency to seek medical, legal, psychological support to fight against any form of violence against women.
3. Women Helpline Scheme – This has been generated on 1st April 2015. The aim is to provide 24 hours of immediate and emergency response to women who are affected by violence.
4. Working Women’s Hostel – The aim of the scheme is to envisage the provision of safe and affordable hostels for women. It also gives rise to a chance of employment to women in urban, semi-urban and rural areas via daycare facilities, etc.
5. Support to Training and Employment Programme (STEP) for women – This scheme targets mostly the marginalized less rural and urban poor women. It also includes wage laborers, unpaid daily workers, women-headed households, and families below the poverty line. The objectives are to provide skill for development and up-gradation, to enable groups of women to take up employment-cum-income generation programs.
6. Swadhar Greh Scheme – This scheme was launched in 2011. The aim is to provide temporary accommodation, maintenance, and rehabilitation centre for homeless women due to dysfunctional family or violence. The objectives include providing them with legal service and emotional support and help as well to start their lives with dignity again, to cater to the primary need for shelter, clothing, and medicine.
7. Rajiv Gandhi National Creche Scheme – The scheme was launched in 2011 and as of 2016 this scheme provides support to different NGOs to carter to the needs. The aim of the scheme is to provide support to the children of the working mothers who were previously resorting to friends and relatives to take care of their babies. As a result, the employment of women who take care of babies has increased.
8. Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojna – The scheme was initially launched in 2010. The aim of the scheme is to ensure safe delivery and good nutrition for pregnant women – women who are having their first child. It provides partial compensation for the wage loss in terms of the cash incentives.
9. Mahila-e-Haat – The aim of the scheme is to strengthen the financial inclusion of Women Entrepreneurs in the economy by providing support to their ideas and notions. The startup “Rashtriya Mahila Kosh” uses the help of technology so that they can showcase products made/manufactured/sold by women entrepreneurs.
10. Mahila Police Volunteers – The aim is to ensure the safety of the citizens and women in particular. It also aims to increase the number of women police officers in the Indian Police. One of its objectives is to make sure the women police officers act as a role model to the citizens of the country.
11. National Mission for Empowerment of Women – It was launched on 15th August 2011. Its aim is to empower women holistically. The objectives are to strengthen the understanding of gender issues, conceptual and programmatic basics of women-centric schemes.
12. Pradhan Mantri Mahila Shakti Kendra Scheme – This scheme was launched in 2017. The aim is to promote community participation through the involvement of Student Volunteers for the empowerment of rural women. The main purpose of the scheme is to enhance the quality of women’s lives.
13. Rashtriya Mahila Kosh – This scheme was launched in March 1993. Its aim is to provide micro-credit to poor women for various livelihood support and income-generating activities at concessional terms in a client-friendly procedure to enhance their socio-economic development.
14. Nand Ghar Yojna – This scheme was launched on 24th June 2015. The aim is to enhance the learning environment through an e-learning module and skill development for women. The objectives are to make Anganwadis as a community center for women and children, to provide supplementary nutrition to children below 6 years to combat against malnutrition.
15. Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana – It was launched in March 2016. The aim is to provide clean fuel to women who are below the poverty line who generally use unclean cooking fuels which harms more – hence they should replace it with LPG. The objective is to protect the health of women and empower them.
16. Maternity Benefit Program – It was launched in 2017. The aim is to provide partial compensation for wage loss to women during pregnancy and offers a cash incentive of Rs. 6000 to mothers bearing their first child. The objective is to promote nutrition and of pregnant and lactating mothers.
17. Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana – This scheme was launched in January 2015. The aim is to encourage parents of the girl child to create a fund or savings for the future education and marriage expenses of their child. The objective is to ensure the financial independence of the girl which helps her to pursue education, other skills, and marriage as well.
18. eSamvad Portal – This was launched in 2018. The aim is to provide a platform for NGOs and civil society to interact with the Ministry on relevant subjects. The portal allows NGOs to contact the Ministry of Women and Child Development and to receive feedback, suggestions based on their practice.
19. Nari Web Portal – This was launched in 2018. The aim of the portal is to spread information about schemes and benefits provided by the Government to the women. The portal enables to access different programs offered by various states as well as the Central Government.
20. She-Box Portal – It was launched in 2018. The aim is to provide a faster remedy to women facing sexual harassment at the workplace. The prompt disposal of the complaints directly goes to the central/state authority concerned so that jurisdiction can be sorted soon.
21. New Draft National Policy – It was launched in 2019. The aim of this policy is to ensure women’s participation as equal partners in all spheres of life. It covers the priority areas like – nutrition and health, education, economic growth, environment, and violence.
Women across the world have been oppressed due to a lot of reasons dating back to the ancient age. However, society also demands women to be an active part. The Women Empowerment Schemes in India help to uplift women in every possible sphere.